A five-overtime game, a botched end of the game call, a near upset, and a rivalry victory were just a few of the highlights from the weekend that was for teams on the Ohio State schedule this year.
Buffalo (1-2), WON vs. Stony Brook (26-23, 5 OTs), NEXT GAME: vs. UConn, September 28th 3:30 PM
Stony Brook came back from 10-0 down in the fourth quarter against Buffalo, capped off by a Malcolm Eugene five-yard touchdown reception with 29 seconds left to force overtime. The teams traded field goals in the first overtime, followed by touchdowns in the second overtime before the defenses took over. Both teams were shutout in the third and fourth overtimes before the Bulls were able to hold the Seawolves to a field goal in the fifth overtime and answering that with a Anthone Taylor six-yard TD run. After catching six passes for 197 yards last week against Baylor, senior wide receiver Alex Nuetz grabbed 10 passes, but was only able to gain 43 yards on those catches. While Neutz was struggling, Taylor picked up the slack via the running game, carrying the ball 24 times for 118 yards and scoring two touchdowns to help Buffalo gain their first win of the 2013 season.
After facing Ohio State and Baylor on the road, and struggling to defeat Stony Brook at home, the Bulls will now get a week off to try and tighten up their gameplan before UConn comes into Buffalo on September 28th.
San Diego State (0-2), Bye week, NEXT GAME: vs. Oregon State, Saturday 7:30 PM
The Aztecs didn't play last week, giving them some extra preparation for the game on Saturday night when Oregon State will make the trip down from Corvaillis. San Diego State will try and right the issues that they have on both sides of the ball, especially with the running game, where they need to get Adam Muema going. So far after two games this season, San Diego State's leading rusher only has 52 yards. It will also be interesting to see if head coach Rocky Long sticks with returning starter Adam Dingwell, or shakes things up by starting Quinn Kaehler, who saw the majority of the snaps in the Ohio State game after relieving Dingwell.
California (1-2), LOSS vs. #4 Ohio State (52-34), NEXT GAME: at #2 Oregon, September 28th
Our Adam Woodard gave a more in-depth recap of Saturday night's game in Berkeley, which you can find here. The Buckeyes jumped out on the Golden Bears 21-0 a little more than five minutes into the game and never looked back. Freshman quarterback Jared Goff didn't play bad for Cal, just missing his third straight 400-yard passing performance to start his career by 31 yards. The early deficit was just too much for Cal to overcome. Unlike last year, the Buckeyes were able to hold running back Brandon Bigelow in check, limiting him to 39 yards after he gained 160 last year in Columbus.
After facing the high-powered Buckeye offense, California can regroup in their bye week this week, but things don't get any easier when they had to Eugene next Saturday to face off with Oregon.
#24 Wisconsin (2-1), LOSS at #23 Arizona State (32-30), NEXT GAME: vs. Purdue, Saturday 3:30 PM
If you were were able to fight off falling asleep during the game late on Saturday night, you know that Wisconsin probably should have walked out of Tempe with a one point victory. If you missed the officiating shenanigans at the end of the game, here is a recap written by Spencer Hall. Wisconsin finally surrendered their first points of the season, allowing Arizona State to put a field goal up on the board in the 1st quarter before they answered with two touchdowns in under a minute in the second quarter to make the game 14-3. After halftime, Melvin Gordon took the football 80 yards for a touchdown to put the Badgers up 21-13. On the night Gordon carried the ball 15 times for 193 yards and two touchdown, averaging a XBox-esque 12.9 yards per carry, which happens to be his average/carry for the season so far. This was the first game on the season where Wisconsin didn't have three running backs with over 100 yards each, but they also did face a notable step up in competition from their first two opponents.
While Arizona State running back Marion Grice didn't have the gaudy yards per carry that Gordon did, he did account for four rushing touchdowns on the evening. The Sun Devils were able to move the ball through the air to get the offense down to near the goal line where Grice could punch it in from close, as three of the four touchdowns were from the two-yard line or closer. Quarterback Tommy Kelly amassed 351 yards through the air for the Sun Devils.
Now the Badgers will try and get back on track this week when Purdue comes into Madison on Saturday afternoon. At least we know if the game ends up being close at the end that Joel Stave will be a lot more careful of where he is kneeling.
#18 Northwestern (3-0), WON vs. Western Michigan (38-17), NEXT GAME, vs. Maine, Saturday 3:30 PM
Northwestern stumbled a little bit early in the game, with Western Michigan holding a 10-7 lead nearly halfway through the second quarter, before turning it on and putting some distance on the Broncos on Saturday night. Western Michigan QB Tyler Van Tubbergen hit wide receiver for a 75-yard touchdown pass to make it 10-7 before Northwestern scored the next 24 points to erase any doubt in the result. Northwestern running back Venric Mark missed another game with a lower body injury, but it just gave Trayvon Green a chance to state his case that he should be getting more carries. For the night, Green had 20 carries for 158 yards and two touchdowns in filling in for Mark. Quarterback Kain Colter added 106 yards and a touchdown on the ground, as Northwestern extended their non-conference home winning streak to 15 games.
This weekend Northwestern will host Maine, a game in which they probably don't need the services of Mark, but you know Pat Fitzgerald wants to get his running back back to 100% before the start of Big Ten play.
Iowa (2-1), WON at Iowa State (27-21), NEXT GAME, vs. Western Michigan, Saturday 12:00 PM
Iowa ended a two-game losing streak to in-state rival Iowa State on Saturday with a 27-21 win in Ames. The Hawkeyes held a 13-0 lead a halftime and held off a late charge by the Cyclones behind running back Mark Weisman's 35 carries for 145 yards on the ground. Weisman has run for over 100 yards in his first three games, becoming the first Hawkeye since Shonn Greene accomplished that feat in 2008. Jake Rudock was a little more comfortable in his third start, total three touchdowns on the game, two through the air and one on the ground. Most of the damage by the Hawkeyes was down on the ground, where they rolled up 218 yards and earned them nearly a 17 minute advantage in time of possession. For as good as the offense was running the football, the Iowa defense was equally as stingy against the run, only surrendering 59 yards on the ground to Iowa State.
Saturday afternoon's game against Western Michigan will mark the third Big Ten team that the Broncos have faced this year. Kirk Ferentz and his Hawkeyes will try and complete the Big Ten sweep on the season against the MAC foe.
Penn State (2-1), LOSS vs. UCF (34-31), NEXT GAME, vs. Kent State, Saturday 3:30 PM
The Central Florida combination of Blake Bortles and Storm Johnson was simply too much for the Nittany Lions for overcome on Saturday night in Happy Valley. Bortles threw for 288 yards through the air and three touchdowns while Johnson rushed for 117 yards and touchdown on 17 carries for the Golden Knights. UCF held a 28-10 lead in the third quarter before Penn State worked their way back into it, falling just a little shy of completing the comeback. Freshman quarterback Christian Hackenberg continued to make Allen Robinson his favorite target, with the two hooking up for 9 catches for 143 yards and a touchdown. Zack Zwinak did most of the work on the ground for Penn State, carrying 21 times for 128 yards and two touchdowns. The Penn State defense just couldn't keep up with Central Florida, allowing 507 total yards to the Golden Knights. The win for Central Florida was the first win in school history against a Big Ten opponent.
The Nittany Lions will try and recover this Saturday when Kent State comes to Happy Valley. Last week the Golden Flashes went down to LSU and lost, so the Nittany Lions are hoping that might have softened up Kent State a little bit.
Purdue (1-2), LOSS vs. #22 Notre Dame (31-24), NEXT GAME, vs. Wisconsin, Saturday 3:30 PM
After getting blown out by Cincinnati the first week, and squeaking out a win last week against Indiana State, Purdue figured to have a tough task ahead of them on Saturday night in West Lafayette against Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish had just lost to Michigan so many thought they were going to take out some of their frustrations on the Boilermakers. Darrell Hazell's crew was game though, jumping out to a early 10-0 lead and hold a lead into the 4th quarter before Notre Dame scored three unanswered touchdowns to take the lead for good. Quarterback Rob Henry looked decidedly improved for Purdue, throwing for 256 yards, 3 touchdowns, and an interception. The one interception by Henry was big though, with Notre Dame's Bennett Jackson taking it 82 yards to make the score 31-17 early in the 4th quarter. The passing game was the only thing that was successful for Purdue, with the ground attack only gaining 38 yards.
Purdue will be in a similar position this week except they'll hit the road to square off with Wisconsin. The Boilermakers will face a team coming off a loss, so they'll have to bring a even better effort this week if they want to keep things close.
Illinois (2-1), LOSS vs. #17 Washington (34-24), NEXT GAME, vs. Miami (Ohio), September 28th
For only the second time in school history the Fighting Illini played a game at the home of the Chicago Bears. Nathan Scheelhaase couldn't channel some of the early season magic he has had, only completing 9 of the 25 passes that he attempted. While on the other side, Washington's Keith Price looked like he couldn't miss, completing 28 of 35 passes for 342 yards and two touchdown passes. Price wasn't the only Husky that put up big numbers, as running back Bishop Sankey rushed for a career-high 208 yards. The balanced Washington offense gained 615 yards of total offense, allowing them to jump out to a 31-10 lead and bring the Fighting Illini back down to earth after their 2-0 start.
The bad news for Illinois is they'll have to look at the game film from this game a little more than normal as they don't play their next game until next Saturday. The Fighting Illini will return to their normal digs in Champaign when Miami (Ohio) visits.
Indiana (2-1), WIN vs. Bowling Green (42-10), NEXT GAME: vs. Missouri, Saturday 8:00 PM
Bowling Green came into Bloomington with thoughts of pulling the upset against Indiana, and actually held a 10-7 lead on the Hoosiers early in the second quarter. The rest of the game belong to Indiana though, with the Hoosiers running off 35 straight points to bounce back from a loss to Navy. Indiana's Nate Sudfeld strengthened his hold on the quarterback job, throwing for 335 yards and two touchdowns against a defense that was returning nine starters from last year. Sudfeld's main target in the game was Cody Latimer, who caught six passes for a career-high 137 yards. The Hoosiers had their best defensive performance in quite some time, only allowing the Bowling Green offense to score three points on the afternoon. The Bowling Green touchdown was scored on a 56-yard return of a blocked punt in the first quarter.
Indiana will host their fourth straight game to start the season on Saturday night when Missouri comes into Bloomington. The Hoosiers will be looking to hang their hat on a win over a SEC team, and take another step towards bowl eligibility on the season.
#15 Michigan (3-0), WIN vs. Akron (28-24), NEXT GAME: at UConn, Saturday 8:00 PM
With Michigan installed as a 37-point favorite coming into the game, this matchup figured to be a cakewalk for the Wolverines. The Zips must have been channeling some of their inner-Tressel as they nearly added to the list of unlikely teams that went into Michigan Stadium and won over the past ten years. Akron was knocking on the door of the end zone with under a minute to play, but the Michigan defense held tough and don't allow the Zips to pull the upset. Had Akron had pulled the upset it would have been their first road victory in nearly five years. Over ANYBODY.
This game will be one that Devin Gardner doesn't put on his highlight reel, as he tossed three interceptions and fumbled another time. Gardner was good when it counted though, leading the Wolverines on the game-winning drive with under four minutes to go. Fitz Toussaint scored the game-winning touchdown with a two-yard run, and for the game rushed 19 times for 71 yards.
The Wolverines will now have some areas of the game that they'll have to work on this week before hitting the road for the first time this season to face UConn on Saturday night.